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Borough to ask for Jonas disaster aid

Written by Staff Report, Public Opinion Online | Mar 28, 2016 4:10 PM
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A crew from Affordable Excavating & Hauling, Inc., remove snow at South Third Street, Chambersburg. (Photo: Markell DeLoatch, Markell DeLoatch/Public Opinion)

(Chambersburg) -- Borough officials are hoping to get a share of a federal aid package being offered to Pennsylvania municipalities to help pay at least part of the cost of cleaning up after January's Winter Storm Jonas.

Communities and nonprofit groups across Pennsylvania will be sharing $37 million in federal money to help in the recovery from Winter Storm Jonas. 

Last week, President Barack Obama declared a major disaster in Pennsylvania for the Jan. 22-23 snowstorm and ordered federal aid for the state and its communities. 

Municipalities in Franklin County are seeking about $900,000 reimbursement from the federal government for cleaning up the 33-inch snowfall.

Council is expected to approve a resolution at its regular meeting Monday night to authorize borough staff to fill the forms necessary to get $214,947 in federal aid to cover costs incurred in the storm that dumped almost three feet of snow and required extraordinary measures to dig local streets out and get them passable. It actually cost the borough over $346,000, $100,000 more than the municipality's annual snow removal budget,  to clear snow from the borough's 58 miles of roads.

The borough hired nine contractors to help get the snow off the streets and haul it to the old borough landfill, often still referred to as the borough farm, where it was dumped.

The reimbursement money will start flowing within 90 days of the writing of the project worksheets, according to  Ruth Miller, spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency.

Council is also expected to approve a $469,654 professional services agreement with the consultants MKSD & Counsilman Hunsaker for design engineering services for a new swimming pool at Memorial Park.

The agreement will move a proposed $7 million pool project at the park forward. The borough is prepared to borrow up to $9.75 million to replace the current aging pool with a modern aquatics facility.

Council meets at 7 p.m. Monday in council chambers on the second floor of Borough Hall, 100 S. Second St. Anyone attending the meeting should enter the building through the police department.

This article is part of a content-sharing partnership between Public Opinion Online and WITF. 

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